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York Benefit Cheat Sentenced


1:43pm 21st January 2014

A benefit cheat in York who was reported through the city council's benefit fraud hotline has been sentenced.

Barbara Brown, 30 of Starkey Crescent, York, claimed Housing and Council Tax Benefit, based on being a single mum on a low income. An investigation conducted by Veritau, who investigate fraud on behalf of York Council, and the Department for Work and Pensions found that Barbara Brown had a partner living with her but she hadn't told the authorities.

During the investigation it was discovered that Barbara Brown’s partner, who was working, had in fact been living with her for almost a year while she continued to claim £2,860.11 in Housing Benefit and £2,525.57 in Income Support.

On 16 January 2014 Barbara Brown pleaded guilty to all charges at York Magistrates Court and received a 12 month conditional discharge and a total of £100 in additional court costs.

Cllr Dafydd Williams, Cabinet Member for Finance, Performance and Customer Service said: “This is another example of a good result in the fight against fraud.  Along with the support of the public, the council will continue to tackle this type of criminal behaviour, and action will be taken against those who are abusing the system.  We’d like to thank the member of the public who brought this to our attention and encourage anyone with knowledge of fraudulent activity to phone the confidential fraud hotline on 01904 552935 or email fraud@york.gov.uk.”

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